Hong Kong galloper Dominant will be stepping up to 3200 metres for the first time in the 2015 Sydney Cup at Royal Randwick this afternoon, but trainer John Moore is confident that the Group 1 winner will have no problem running out the trip.
Dominant has not recorded a race win since he beat the likes of Dunaden and Red Cadeaux to win the 2013 edition of the Group 1 Hong Kong Vase (2400m), but he was only narrowly denied in the Group 3 The Centenary Vase (1800m) at Sha Tin on February 7 and he was far from disgraced in the Group 1 Ranvet Stakes (2000m) at Rosehill Gardens on March 21.
Moore told Sky Racing HQ that Dominant has thrived during his time in Australia and he is excited to see how the seven-year-old will fares in his maiden opportunity over two miles in the Sydney Cup.
“He has done everything right since he arrived,” Moore said.
“He ate up great last night, he looks great in the coat and the work rider is thrilled with his work.
“It is the first time that he goes over two miles and he is giving away about ten pounds to Hartnell, which is going to be a task, but we are in there with a shot and we do believe that he will get the two miles.
“Fingers crossed that we get a good run – we have the magician on board – and we are hoping that he can finish in the first three.
“That is what he sent to Australia for, to go over the 2400 and for that reason we picked out the Sydney Cup.
“We know that the money is in the Queen Elizabeth, but we have to look in the horses best interests and the two mile I don’t think will be a problem.”
While Moore fancies the chances of Dominant, the Group 1 winner has been one of the big drifters in the 2015 Sydney Cup betting markets and he has been a consistent drifter throughout the week, with the Cacique entire now available at a quote of $19.
Hartnell has easily been the best-backed runner and he is now a dominant favourite at 2015 Sydney Cup odds of $1.95 and is a clear favourite from Melbourne Cup winner Protectionist ($4.80) and Chris Waller-trained Who Shot Thebarman ($5).
There has been a sprinkling of support for Au Revoir ($31 into $26) and Akzar ($31 into $26), while Renew ($26 out to $51) and Grand Marshal ($34 out to $41) have both been on the drift.